Simone Douglas wears many hats but this time we are going to interview her as proprieter of the Duke Of Brunswick Hotel and as a representative of the Hospo Owners Collective, during this phase of trying to deliver hospitality in a time of Covid. Ultimately we discover, we need to honour the science, we need to manager our communal health, we need to nurture our economy, and perhaps the missing link has been a strong, statesperson in political leadership? That said, we also note that this is a one in 100 year event.

We also drink a stunning Shiraz by Cimicky Wines from the Barossa.

And in the Musical Pilgrimage, Emma Knights sings There’s No Beauty.

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Running Sheet: Hospitality in a time of Covid

00:00:00 Intro

Introduction to the show.

00:03:35 SA Drink Of The Week

The SA Drink Of The Week is 2017 Cimicky Wines Shiraz from the Barossa.

2017 Cimicky Shiraz Barossa Valley

00:13:01 Simone Douglas

Simone Douglas is no stranger to mixing it with influential members of parliament, government, and industry. Usually, it’s all very harmonious. But over much of 2021, we’ve seen a different side of Simone, as she has stepped up (as co-owner of the Duke Of Brunswick Hotel and as a respresentative of the Hospo Owners Collective), to help her sector advocate for what she calls more responsible and just Covid restrictions.

Before we get into the guts of this discussion today, what has it been like, having to be on the front foot, trying to advocate for change against people and institutions you are normally in harmony with?

I should also put in early that this podcast rests on a couple of very important principles. Firstly, we accept the world’s scientific and medical consensus about this pandemic, about the measures that have been explored to constrain it (thanks to epidemiologists who know a lot more about the complexities of these things than your Facebook Armchair Experts or conservative commentators), and secondly, we feel deeply for SA Health and our politicians who are having to navigate through a once-in-100-years event but are doing so in an age of social media in which looney conspiracy theorists can make as much if not more noise than proper experts.

That said, we also hold to the principle that humans are fallible and we must always have a curiosity and and open mind so as to keep reviewing evidence in light of experience and data AND we must appreciate that, as Oscar Wilde said, the truth is rarely pure and never simple.

Simone, can you chart us through the journey of running a pub during Covid, noting that you’ve always had a strong stance of supporting community groups and performers.

What’s it been like for staff

What’s it been like with suppliers

How have the different phases of government regulations affected you

What would you like to see

What is holding the government back

Researchers from Monash University and the University of Edinburgh, just published the results of a large study. I’ll quote from the Guardian story –

“This systematic review and meta analysis suggests that several personal protective and social measures, including handwashing, mask wearing, and physical distancing are associated with reductions in the incidence of Covid-19,” the researchers wrote in the BMJ. They said the results highlight the need to continue mask wearing, social distancing and handwashing alongside vaccine programmes.

Can you see a way for the hospitality sector to accommodate masks and distancing while remaining viable?

What is your message to us?

01:02:52 Musical Pilgrimage

In the musical pilgrimage, we have There’s No Beauty, a song by Emma Knights who performs often at the Duke Of Brunswick.

Here’s this week’s preview video

No preview video this week.

SFX: Throughout the podcast we use free SFX from freesfx.co.uk for the harp, the visa stamp, the silent movie music, the stylus, the radio signal SFX, the wine pouring and cork pulling SFX, and the swooshes around Siri.